St Albans race for life set for Verulamium Park on Sunday

Lauren Allsey and Victoria Beesley

Lauren Allsey and Victoria Beesley - Credit: Archant

TWO teenagers are set to join a sea of pink ladies in Verulamium Park on Sunday morning to take part in this year’s Race for Life in memory of Peter Andre’s brother.

Lauren Allsey, St Albans, was motivated to sign up for the charity race when she heard the singer’s brother, Andrew Andre, had lost his battle with cancer aged 54 last December.

The 15-year-old said: “I am quite a big fan of Peter Andre and I have met his brother at his coffee shops and we wanted to do it in memory of him.”

Lauren added: “I am most looking forward to completing it in a short time - we have a target of 20 minutes.”

And running alongside her will be friend Victoria Beesley, 15, of Marlborough Road, who will also be completing the race in memory of her mum who died from a brain tumour two years ago.

To pair are hoping to raise £1,000 for Cancer Research UK. To sponsor them visit

A “RUNAWAY bride” will don her wedding dress for a second time in a bid to raise money for Cancer Research.

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Katie Daines, 31 of Cedar Court, is to celebrate her one-year wedding anniversary by tying up her laces, tightening her corset and running 5km this Sunday. She will be joining over 3,000 other women competing in St Albans’ annual Race for Life.

Katie, who has been dubbed the “runaway bride” by friends, said: “I think it’ll be more of a walk/jog instead of a run. I haven’t actually tried running with the dress on and I’m going to look so silly walking around St Albans in it but that doesn’t matter.

“It’s a cause close to my heart as I have lost both sets of grandparents to cancer and my husband lost an aunt. I’m not too worried about the distance as it’s all about the cause and supporting the charity.”

With a history in running, having represented the county and St Albans Athletics Club in cross country running, Katie understands the demands of such a challenge and has been training since January.

She added: “I’m now aiming to do it every year in my wedding dress to mark our anniversary. It’s for an extremely important cause and I’m trying to convince my friends to join me in their wedding dresses.”

To sponsor Katie visit

FOLLOWING the death of her mother on the day of last year’s Race for Life, Debz Allen will take on her 12th charity run in tribute to her.

The 5km run held in Verulamium Park, St Albans, will be Debz’ most significant race to date after her mum lost her battle with cancer one year ago.

Speaking of her experience last year, the 45-year-old said: “Half way through the race I got a call saying my mum was dying. She died an hour after the race having fought breast and ovarian cancer for a number of years.

“Running this year means so much for us and it’ll be the most important one I’ve taken part in so far.”

Having also lost her father, grandparents and best friend to cancer, Debz is painfully aware of the damage cancer can cause. She herself was diagnosed with breast cancer five years ago and is waiting to be given the all clear.

Debz, who will be joined by her son, niece and 31 colleagues from Tesco in Hemel Hempstead on Sunday, said: “We’re so close to getting a cure and this wouldn’t be possible without all the fundraising and sponsorship.

“It’s the one charity I will support for the rest of my life. It’s so important we keep fighting.”

Sunday promises to be a popular event, and Debz insists that, despite the sombre nature of the cause, the day will be enjoyable thanks to all the support she has received.

“Our store manager is being really generous, it’s overwhelming, throwing out all the stops with picnics and gazebos, to make sure we have a really good day.”

To help Debz reach her fundraising target visit

SPIRITS are high as the finish line looms for Lisa Burke who will be embarking on her ninth Race for Life this coming Sunday.

Since 2004, Lisa, 43, has joined hordes of women dressed in pink tutus and feather boas in running the annual 5km race around Verulamium Park.

Taking part alongside her mother and sister, she said: “There’s a fantastic atmosphere on the day, you laugh, you cry, you hear everyone’s stories, it helps to unite us all. Everyone should definitely take part.

“With Cancer Research, you know that all you give is going straight to fighting cancer and we have to keep fundraising to make sure it is treatable and eventually curable.”

Lisa had her first mammogram back in 2010 where it was revealed she was in the first stages of breast cancer. Fortunately the early discovery was significant in Lisa’s battle with the disease and she is now three years into recovery.

To support Lisa go to